I've never been much of a fan for old Hollywood films, but when I was a film studies student it was often necessary to watch them. Most of the time, they did nothing to improve my opinion, but every now and then there would be a film that made me think, 'hey that wasn't half bad.' Some Like It Hot was one of them. In fact it is considerably on the way to being pretty darn good.
I was meant to be doing a comparison between two Hollywood stars of different eras. I decided to do Bette Davis and Marilyn Monroe. I thought it a good comparison, because just as All About Eve was (apart from a few obscure later films) Davis's bowing out of the Star System, it was also the beginning of Monroe's career. Among several of the Monroe films I watched was Some Like It Hot. I figured since my mum had it on video, it would save me borrowing it from the library.
Despite my motives being one of convenience, I ended up enjoying the film very much.
When musicians, Joe (Tony Curtis) and Jerry (Jack Lemmon), witness the 1929 St. Valentine's Day massacre, they find themselves being hunted down by a gang of gangsters. In order to hide, they dress up as women and join a female band heading to Miami. They both get rather taken with the lead singer, Sugar Kane (Marilyn Monroe), which leads to many hilarious situations.
In 2000, the American Film Institute called Some Like It Hot, 'the greatest American comedy film of all time'. While I would not go that far, it is full of laughs, and definitely one to watch.
My favourite scene is at the beginning when Joe and Jerry witness the shoot up. I love that Spats, the mob leader, wears high heels, and that to avoid the mob, Joe wants to shave. Shave his legs that is.
My VHS says it is 'Marilyn's finest performance', and her 'sexiest and funniest role'. While I can't agree with this (her serious performances in Bus Stop and Niagra are far better), Curtis and Lemmon are superb, and it is one of Billy Wilder's best directed films.